|Publication number||US4453630 A|
|Application number||US 06/439,085|
|Publication date||Jun 12, 1984|
|Filing date||Nov 4, 1982|
|Priority date||Nov 4, 1982|
|Publication number||06439085, 439085, US 4453630 A, US 4453630A, US-A-4453630, US4453630 A, US4453630A|
|Inventors||Charles R. Helms, John V. Bousum, Richard T. Walters, William H. Carr|
|Original Assignee||Container Corporation Of America|
|Export Citation||BiBTeX, EndNote, RefMan|
|Patent Citations (12), Referenced by (24), Classifications (9), Legal Events (6)|
|External Links: USPTO, USPTO Assignment, Espacenet|
1. Field of the Invention
This invention relates to multi-pack carriers, and more particularly to a carrier including a shell formed of a relatively thin sheet material having reinforced openings for snugly receiving and retaining upper portions of packaged articles such as bottles or cans.
2. Description of the Prior Art
A prior art search directed to the subject matter of this application in the U.S. Patent and Trademark Office disclosed the following U.S. Pat. Nos.: 2,401,578; 2,441,346; 2,487,109; 2,520,203; 2,892,540; 2,936,070; 3,199,908; 3,373,867; 3,443,685; 3,460,863; 3,567,016; 3,621,628; 3,688,899; 3,721,337; 3,757,983; 3,785,484; 3,884,354; 3,923,155; 3,938,656; 4,022,363; 4,139,094; 4,190,149; 4,304,329; Canadian Pat. No. 655,425.
None of the prior art patents uncovered in the search disclosed a carrier including a shell formed of relatively thin printable sheet material and having a molded plastic frame bonded to the underside thereof to reinforce the article receiving openings, the finger openings, and the corners of the shell.
It is an object of the invention to provide an improved multi-pack carrier for transporting a plurality of preferably cylindrical articles such as bottles or cans.
Another object of the invention is the provision, in a carrier of the type described, of a unique construction employing a relatively thin shell formed of a printable sheet material, such as paperboard, and which is reinforced by a molded plastic frame bonded to the underside thereof.
A more specific object of the invention is the provision of a composite multi-pack carrier including an outer shell formed of a relatively thin printable sheet material which has a plurality of openings for accepting and holding upper portions of packaged articles and wherein the openings are reinforced by a molded plastic, skeletal frame bonded to the underside of the shell.
These and other objects of the invention will be apparent from an examination of the following description and drawings.
FIG. 1 is a fragmentary perspective view of a package including a carrier embodying features of the present invention;
FIG. 2 is a fragmentary plan view, as seen from the top, of the novel carrier illustrated in FIG. 1;
FIG. 3 is a plan view the underside of the carrier;
FIG. 4 is a plan view of a blank of foldable sheet material from which the shell portion of the carrier illustrated in the other views may be formed;
FIG. 5 is a view similar to that of FIG. 3, but illustrating a modified form of the invention;
FIG. 6 is an enlarged fragmentary top plan view of a center article receiving reinforced opening area of the structure of FIG. 5.
FIGS. 7-11 are views similar to that of FIG. 6, but illustrate modified forms of the invention.
FIG. 12 is a view similar to that of FIG. 2, but illustrates anothwer form of the invention;
FIG. 13 is a side elevational view of a carrier but illustrates another embodiment of the invention;
FIG. 14 is a view similar to that of FIGS. 3 and 5, but illustrates still another form of the invention;
FIG. 15 is a fragmentary top plan view of a portion of the structure illustrated in FIG. 14;
FIGS. 16 and 17 are fragmentary views similar to those of FIGS. 14 and 15 but illustrate yet another embodiment of the invention; and
FIG. 18 is a view similar to those of FIGS. 7-11, but illustrate one other embodiment of the invention.
It will be understood that, for purposes of clarity, certain elements may have been intentionally omitted from certain views where they are believed to be illustrated to better advantage.
Referring now to the drawings for a better understanding of the invention, and first to FIG. 1, there is illustrated a package, indicated generally at P, for holding a plurality of articles A, such as bottles, by means of a novel composite carrier, indicated generally at C.
Carrier C includes an outer shell S, which may be formed from a unitary blank B of printed sheet material, such as paperboard, illustrated in FIG. 4, and a molded plastic, skeletal type frame indicated, generally at F, which is bonded to the underside of the shell in an insert injection molding process of the type described in U.S. Pat. No. 3,154,617.
As best seen in FIGS. 1 and 4, shell S includes a relatively flat, generally rectangular top panel 10 having a plurality of openings 11 extending therethrough for receiving upper portions of packaged articles such as bottles or cans. Top panel 10 also includes a pair of spaced openings 13 which are designed to facilitate grasping and lifting of the package.
Shell S also includes opposed pairs of side panels 14 and end panels 16 which are foldably joined along fold lines 15 and 17 to the side and end edges, respectively, of top panel 10 to form therewith a cover for enclosing upper portions of the packaged articles.
In order to permit the shell to be formed of sheet material which is relatively thin so as to be less expensive than thicker materials, the invention contemplates the idea of reinforcing the openings of the shell, as well as the corners of the shell, by a skeletal type molded plastic frame indicated generally at F. As previously mentioned, the frame is formed by inserting the shell into an injection mold and then inserting the plastic in an insert injection molding process.
As best seen in FIGS. 2 and 3, frame F includes a plurality of reinforcing ring elements 24 which are disposed around the article receiving holes 11 in the shell top panel. The ring elements or collars 24 may, in certain cases, include a plurality of radially inwardly extending, circumferentially spaced fingers or tabs 26 which project into the opening for engagement with the caps of packaged bottles or with the chimes or packaged cans.
The frame F also includes a plurality of reinforcing ring elements or collars 20 which are disposed to surround the lifting, openings, or finger holes 13 in the top panel of the shell.
As best seen in FIG. 3, reinforcing rings 20 are preferably connected to each other by a strut 22 of the frame and are connected to the other reinforcing rings 24 by means of other struts 28. It should be understood, however, that it is not essential for all of the reinforcing rings to be interconnected. Although not shown, an acceptable alternate arrangement could omit certain of the struts.
Still referring to FIG. 3 it will be seen that the frame includes a preferably rectangular, though rounded at the corners, outer connecting rim 30 which surrounds top panel 10 at the junctures of the top panel with the side and end panels.
Also, extending downwardly from the upper corners of the carrier are a plurality of corner ribs 32 which are formed integrally with the outer connecting rim 30 and which, in turn, have formed integrally with their lower ends horizontal bars 34, which extend a short distance in opposite directions from the lower ends of ribs 32 to form generally T-shaped structures reinforcing the carrier at the lower portions of its corners.
Referring to FIG. 5, it will be seen that a slightly modified form of the invention is shown. In this view as well as in the views illustrating other embodiments of the invention, portions of the structure corresponding to portions of the earlier illustrated embodiment are designated by related numerals.
The shell structure of FIG. 5 is basically the same as that of the previously described embodiment. The frame structure differs in several respects.
It will be noted that the outer connecting rim 130 of the frame F1 is not solid, but is provided with a plurality of openings 131 which permit the use of a lesser quantity of plastic material in forming the rim.
As best seen in FIGS. 5 and 6, in the center article receiving openings the radially inner portion of the ring or collar 124 projects above the plane of the shell, and the ends of the fingers 126 are squared off, rather than being rounded as in the case of the other collars 24.
This provides for a more snug engagement between the carrier collar and the upper portion of the article carried. In order to accommodate the projection of the collars 124, the area of the shell top panel 10 may be provided with a plurality of circumferentially spaced V-shaped notches 119.
In the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 7 and 8 the openings 227 between the fingers 226 of collar 224 have been enlarged to relieve stress and make it easier to remove an article from the opening, but still prevent the article from coming out accidentally.
In the form of the invention illustrated in FIGS. 9 and 10, it will be seen that the fingers 326 of collar 324 extend inwardly well beyond the edge of the shell openings and also that the slots 327 between adjacent fingers is larger than in previous embodiments of the invention.
As best seen in FIG. 11, a slightly modified form of the invention is shown, wherein every other finger 426 of collar 424 is larger than the adjacent finger 426a.
In FIG. 12, a modified form of the invention is illustrated. In this embodiment shell S2 is provided with weakened lines of tear 509 which extend diagonally outward from finger openings 13 to article receiving holes 11. The struts (not shown) of the frame under the top panel 510 may also be provided with aligned weakened lines or notches to facilitate tearing of structure to remove the packaged articles.
As best seen in FIG. 13, another form of the invention is shown, wherein the side panels 614 are provided with contoured weakened lines of tear 609 to facilitate opening the carrier and removing the packaged articles.
Yet another embodiment of the invention is illustrated in FIGS. 14 and 15 where the Shell S is the same as that of the first described embodiment, but the Frame F2 differs in certain respects.
In this embodiment, the article receiving collars 724 on each side of the carrier are interconnected by a pair of struts 734, and the struts on opposite sides of the carrier are, in turn, connected to each other by cross struts 734a, which are again in turn connected to each other by a center strut 734b.
Reinforcement of finger holes 13 is accomplished by a pair of semi-circular loops 720 extending outwardly from cross struts 734a around finger openings 13.
The embodiment illustrated in FIGS. 16 and 17 is the same as that of FIGS. 14 and 15, except for the omission of loops around finger openings 13 in the shell. In FIG. 18, there is illustrated a fragmentary view similar to that of FIG. 6 wherein the article receiving hole 11 in the shell top panel 10 includes a reinforcing ring element 924 which is disposed around and projects within the hole 11. The ring element 924 lies above the plane of the panel 10.
Thus, it will be appreciated that the invention provides a unique way to form a composite multi-pack carrier wherein the major portion of the carrier, namely the shell, may be formed from a relatively thin inexpensive sheet material and may be reinforced in the critical areas by a molded plastic skeletal frame. Although various embodiments of the invention have been illustrated and described, it will be understood that, in spite of structural differences between them, they all embody the same basic principles of construction and operation.
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|Citing Patent||Filing date||Publication date||Applicant||Title|
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|DE3627564A1 *||Aug 14, 1986||Feb 18, 1988||Unilever Nv||Flaschentraeger|
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|U.S. Classification||206/158, 294/87.2, 206/161, 206/147, 206/148|
|International Classification||B65D71/50, B65D67/02|
|Nov 4, 1982||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: CONTAINER COPORATION OF AMERICA CHICAGO IL A DE CO
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNORS:HELMS, CHARLES R.;BOUSUM, JOHN V.;WALTER, RICHARD T.;REEL/FRAME:004067/0822;SIGNING DATES FROM 19820922 TO 19820923
|May 7, 1985||AS||Assignment|
Owner name: DOUBLE H PLASTICS, INC., SOUTHAPTON, PA. A PA CO
Free format text: ASSIGNMENT OF ASSIGNORS INTEREST.;ASSIGNOR:CONTAINER CORPORATION OF AMERICA;REEL/FRAME:004400/0348
Effective date: 19850225
|Jul 6, 1987||FPAY||Fee payment|
Year of fee payment: 4
|Jan 14, 1992||REMI||Maintenance fee reminder mailed|
|Jun 14, 1992||LAPS||Lapse for failure to pay maintenance fees|
|Aug 18, 1992||FP||Expired due to failure to pay maintenance fee|
Effective date: 19920614